Friday, 15 June 2018

Hard Hunted (4 Stars)

This is the seventh film in the Andy Sidaris collection, made in 1992. If the films are considered to be a continuing series, which is almost the case, there's a significant development in "Hard Hunted". In the past six films the agents Donna, Taryn and Nicole worked for Molokai Cargo, a company created for the sole purpose of giving them an undercover day job. The Abilene family used a yacht as their base. The yacht disappeared after the third film, making it unclear where the newest Abilene, Shane, was based. In "Hard Hunted" there's a new base of operations. A radio station called KSXY is used as a cover for the Agency, where radio hosts like Ava give coded messages on the air. KSXY is featured for the rest of the Andy Sidaris films. Shane sits in the radio station's office, out of harm's way. When he goes into action his poor shooting endangers his fellow agents more than the enemy.

Does Ava look familiar to you? She should. She's played by Ava Cadell, who was an assassin in the last film, "Do Or Die". The assassin, also called Ava, was killed, so now the actress can return in a new role. I can't help thinking that the one-off roles as bad guys are just auditions for recurring roles as good guys.

"Hard Hunted" features the return of Kane, the megalomaniac villain that we met in "Do Or Die". I have to admit that I wasn't sure at first if it was the same Kane or another villain with the same name. I think that Andy Sidaris plays around with the actors just to confuse us. In "Do Or Die" Kane was played by Pat Morita, a 59-year-old Japanese American actor. In "Hard Hunted" he's played by Geoffrey Moore, a 26-year-old English actor.

This is Pat Morita as Kane in "Do Or Die".

This is Geoffrey Moore as Kane in "Hard Hunted".

As you can see, there's not much similarity. When I was watching "Hard Hunted" today I suspected they could possibly be the same person, because both of them have the same lover, Silk, a double agent for the Agency played by Carolyn Liu. I wasn't convinced until there was a flashback to "Do Or Die", the same scene played with a different actor. In "Do Or Die" Silk gives Pat Morita a pendant with a tracking device. In "Hard Hunted" we see her giving the pendant to Geoffrey Moore.

The film begins with a jade Buddha being stolen from Kane by an Agency operative called Mika. She dies when she passes it to Donna before she can tell her why it's valuable. It contains the trigger mechanism for an atomic bomb. For most of the film Donna and Nicole are under attack as Kane tries to retrieve the Buddha.

Rodrigo Obregon returns as a mercenary called Rodrigo Pico. As is to be expected, he doesn't survive till the end of the film. He hardly ever does.

I haven't mentioned until now that Andy Sidaris frequently calls the characters in his films by the first name of the actors who play them. Here are a few examples:

Donna Hamilton is played by Dona Speir.

Ava is played by Ava Cadell.

Bruce Christian is played by Bruce Penhall.

Becky (an Agency operative) is played by Becky Mullen.

Mika is played by Mika Quintard.

There are countless minor characters also called by the names of the actors. Check the IMDB listings if you don't believe me.

We briefly see a close up of Donna's ID card, but it doesn't help us identify the Agency she works for. All it tells us is that it's none of the well known agencies. Or maybe it's just a fake. It looks like strips of paper stuck together on another piece of paper. Let's be kind to Andy. It was 1992, and although there were desk top publishing programmes at that time they were only known to insiders.

In the film introduction by Andy Sidaris and Julie Strain we get an impression of how big Julie is. She is only 6'1½" inches tall – don't  forget the half inch! – but in most of her films she wears six inch high heels, and she has a fluffy hair style that adds another inch or two to her overall size. She likes to intimidate men with her height. Andy has trouble looking her in the eyes when he's talking to her, and that's the way she likes it.

Andy Sidaris' films usually end with a scene in which the agents congratulate one another with a glass of champagne. In this film Nicole, Donna and Bruce drink coconut milk on the beach instead. Note that they have a radio to listen to Ava's broadcasts. Maybe she's told them not to drink and drive.

Order from
Order from

No comments:

Post a Comment

Tick the box "Notify me" to receive notification of replies.